December 30, 2015

The Christianville Spirit: Christian's Year-In-Review 2015

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparkles
December 30, 2015- TCS # 479

Well, My Readers, PTLS Family Members, and Friends, It looks like We have come to The End of Another Year here at The Christianville Spirit and What a Year it was. This Year of 2015 was One Crazy Up-and-Down Exciting Year for Our Family but, Totally worth Every High and Low Point of The Year. 2015 was a Special Year, because It was My 10th Year of Writing This Newsletter and I planned on Celebrating This Year. Well, Celebrate We Did! So, When I look back on This Year, I remember different events and I am shocked like “That happened THIS Year?!” and Now, This Year of Memories in both ways are Over. But, before 2016 comes and We watch The Ball drop, Let’s Re-Live 2015 via What I call “Christian’s Year-In-Review 2015”, My Self-Produced Year-In-Review. So, Without further a due, Let’s get started! As with Every Year, We start in January. As I mentioned before, The Christianville Spirit’s 10th Year Celebration started at The Beginning of The Year. Personally though, January was a Quiet Month other than The National Championship Game held here in Dallas on January 12th. That was a Big Deal here and The Weather, of course, followed. on January 2nd, My PTLS “Brother”, Tyler came over to My House, The First Time that a PTLSer has been to My House. We had lots of Fun. In Weather News, Dangerous Wind Chills, like -70 (Negative 70) to -20 (Negative 20) hit The Midwestern US in Mid-January as well as “Record-Breaking Snow” hit the Boston Area as part of “Winter Storm Juno”. In the News, There was a Terrorist Attack on a Satirical Newspaper in Paris on January 7th. February was a Bit more Exciting where PTLS Member, Natalie Hinkin came up with The Genius Idea to sell what would be Known as “Be Seen, Wear Green” Shirts for PTLS. What We now call “The Key Shirt”. We sold 414 Shirts in 2 Weeks, Quite an Accomplishment! A Bit of Romance here; Our Neighbors and Soulmates, Rob and Caree got Married on February 7th. on February 25th, I re-connected with My Elementary School Friend, Lynee via Her Sister. Have not met her in Person but, I plan to in 2016. In The News, A Plane crashes into a Highway and River in Taiwan on February 17th. In March (which I refer to as “Marzo”) “Marzo” was PTLS Awareness Month. I took pictures each day for What I called SGED (Something Green Every Day) to spread awareness about Potocki-Lupski Syndrome. On March 19th, My Mom and I went to The new Nebraska Furniture Mart (Refer to “Christian goes to Nebraska” Newsletter). In Weather News, on March 6th, We had a Texas Version of a Blizzard, It was Really Cool! In The News, a Germanwings Plane crashed in The Alps Mountains. In April, It was a Month of The Number 4. Newsletter 444 (April 1st) and Newsletter 446 (April 15th), refer to those if You want to know what it means! Mid-April, My Mom and I watched as a Baby Giraffe was born at the Dallas Zoo. It was Interesting to say The Least! In The News, There was a Huge Earthquake in Nepal and My Mom’s Friend was actually there when it happened! In May, Besides Lynee Remembrance Day Observances; There was a “Great Flood” all over The DFW Area from Mid to Late May. In The News; on May 2nd, The “Royal Couple” of The UK, William and Kate had a Baby and named it Charlotte Elizabeth Diana. The Late-Princess Diana would be Very Proud! Now, We hit What I now refer to as The Crazy-yet-Best Summer Ever! In June, We had an Annual Family Beach Trip to Gulf Shores. I was a bit Frustrated This Month because Google Maps was converting to The New Google Maps and Killing Classic Google Maps. In The News, A Horse named “American Pharaoh” won The Triple Crown, The First Winner since 1978. On June 17th, There was a Shooting at a Church in Charleston, South Carolina. July 1st-4th was The PTLS Conference in Houston (refer to “PTLS Conference” Newsletter). In Mid-July, I find out that, Surprise! We are going to Stockholm, Sweden in September! That Event would Completely and Awesomely Change My Summer because I had been wanting to go Sweden for 5 Years, more on that later. In The News, A Big Step was taken on July 1st, Where The United States opened an Embassy in Cuba and Vice Versa. also, Four Marines were killed in Chattanooga, Tennessee on July 23rd. In August, although It was My “Birth Month” as We call it, It started out with a Low Point because on August 2nd, My Brother, Michael moved to Denver, Colorado. But, I did get to go surprise him The Night before at An Art Show where Some of His Art was. I am Very Proud of My Brother! In The News, In trying to avoid Too Many Political Stories; There was a Blast at a Temple in Bangkok, Thailand on August 17th. Bonus Story! My Mom and I saw Disney/Pixar’s Inside Out on My Birthday, It was Genius! Now, We move on into The Height of My Summer with My PTLS Business Trip to Sweden and The United Kingdom in September. Even Today, I am still in Disbelieve that I actually went there This Year. I have to say, that My Sweden/UK Trip was The Highlight of My Year! We went in Late September. In The News, Refugees from Syria start Flooding into Europe in the Beginning of September. In October, other than Recovering from The Awesome Trip to Sweden, October was a Quiet Month. I can say that I went outside and hung out with Our Neighbors on Halloween, that was a Shocker but, a Very Proud Moment. It does not mean that I like Halloween, I still hate it, but it was Less Lonely. In The News, a Shooting at a College in Oregon happened on October 1st. In November, It got exciting again because It was the Official 10th Year of Writing Anniversary of The Christianville Spirit (Refer to “Newsletter Anniversary” Newsletter). I could not believe that I had been Writing for That Long! For Thanksgiving, We drove down to Houston to see My Uncle Craig and Spend It with Him. In The News, on November 13th, There was Another Terrorist Attack in Paris and I was pretty Angry about It! And, Finally, We wrap around to The Last Month of The Year, December. In The News, We had what The News refers to as “The Worst Terror Attack since 9/11” in San Bernardino, California. So, With all those Crazy News Stories behind us, I will leave you with a Positive Story to End The Year of 2015. For Christmas, My Mom and I drove with Our Dog, Zoe to Atlanta to see My Grandma Honey and The Smith Family. It was surprisingly smooth traveling with Zoe for 12 Hours to Atlanta and 12 Hours back home to Dallas. All in All, with all that said, All I have to say, is What. A. Year! It was Amazing, Awesome, Unbelievable, and Yes, Some Parts weren’t so Fun but, Hey! A lot can happen in a Year! I hope that You had a Great or Good Year. And, I can’t wait to see you for yet another year of Inspirational, Thought-Provoking, and Interesting Newsletters in 2016!

(For The Last Time in 2015)

Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. You never know what a Year is going to Bring. Be Positive!

December 16, 2015

The Christianville Spirit: The Ideal Christmas

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparkles
December 16, 2015-TCS # 478

Well, My Readers, It is that Time of Year, My Favorite Time of Year, Christmas. I know I said that probably Last Week and The Week before, but I mean it Every Time. Christmas is My Most Favorite Time of The Year. When I picture The Quintessential Christmas, I picture Myself around My Family, namely My Intermediate Family (My Mom and Brother) and having Quality Time with them that I enjoy Very Much. I enjoy My Mom with Her annual Let’s call it “Grandma Honey Mushiness” (a Very Proud
Thing in Our Family!) and My Brother being Goofy as well as Making us Laugh. and Yes, He often makes us Wonder about The World and curious of How exactly does He see The World. I do include My PTLS Family in There too, We wish them a Merry Christmas on Facebook and Hope to see a Few over The Holiday Season. But, Here is a Golden type of Question, What would be The Ideal Christmas? The Perfect-but-Not Perfect Christmas. By That I Mean, that People put too much Pressure on Themselves to have the “Perfect Christmas” or More on The Lines of “A Christmas that HAS to be Perfect” and because of That, they don’t enjoy this Happy Time of Year. But, Everyone should have an “Ideal Christmas”, a Christmas to Dream about! Now I know, It is hard to think in Our Natural Crazy World that this could ever be put together but, We can Dream can’t we?! So, What is Your Ideal Christmas and What does it look like? Well, Mine would be Heaps of Fun! I have gotten in a habit of saying “Heaps”, It is a Phrase that They use in Australia. Anyway, I picture Most of The Christmas Season seeing The Christmas Lights, and Music that Me and My Future Wife are jamming out to in The Car while seeing The Lights, Ooooing and Awwwing along The Way. Christmas gets kicked off by Putting up a Small-but-Real Tree with Pretty Lights and Ornaments. Then, We could watch a Tree Lighting somewhere, maybe like We did with Uncle Craig in Houston. Me and Said Wife would stay up late and Turn the Lights and Television off and Just stare at Our Tree because It is So Peaceful! Maybe We would lay under The Tree looking up at Lights to see it from The Inside. There would be a Time when We just Cuddle looking at The Tree in disbelieve that We would be that Blessed. As Christmas got closer, We could have a Little Party with Family and Some of My PTLS Family, that would be Heaps of Fun! Boy, It would be One Long Table to fit My Mom, Some of Smith Family, and PTLS Family. Then, that gives me all Quality Time with Everyone that I would ever need. I would have a Few Helpers with The Food and I would try to help as much as I can. Me and My Wife would probably play Host. On Christmas Eve into Christmas Day, Myself and My Wife, My Brother and Wife, and My Mom and Her Future Husband will all be Together in a Beautiful Log Cabin in The Mountains, with it Snowing! Now, That would be Romantic! We would stay there until probably The 27th. At that Time, We will all be Excited and Thrilled about Christmas. After Christmas, Me and My Wife will cuddle together and Watch the Ball Drop in Time Square on TV to celebrate New Years. So, That would be My Ideal Christmas. Yes, It sounds a Bit Cheesy and Uberly Romantic but, like I said, We are Very proud of that “Grandma Honey Mushiness”. All in All, My Readers, I hope You have a Very Merry-Blessed Christmas, If You do not Celebrate Christmas, I hope You have a Happy Hanukah, Happy Kwanza, and a Blessed Yule.

Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah (or Chanukah), Happy Kwanza, and Blessed Yule from The Christianville Spirit! 

December 9, 2015

The Christianville Spirit: Where is The North Pole?

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparkles
December 9, 2015-TCS # 477

My Name is Christian Smith-Centeno and I believe in Santa Claus! Wow! It takes a Man to say that! It takes a Man to say at My Age that He still believes in Santa Claus. In Fact, I challenge you to say the Same Thing. You See, When I was in School, at the High School Age, You were ridiculed for still believing in Santa Claus, as if Santa is only for Children and That could be The Farthest from The Truth. The Reason though? I believe in not just Santa but, more on The Lines of The Magic of Santa. I remember One Year that I was going to Sleep on Christmas Eve when I heard Jingle Bells in The Distance and that is How I knew Santa was coming as well as a Few Thuds on The Roof in My Childhood. So, the Magic still lives in Me! Now, when People say “The Magic”, It is not like a “Magic Trick” type of Magic, It is Legit. Now, Of Course Everyone has Different Version of how Santa actually works but, This is My Belief as well as Curious Questions about it. I should mention here that There are People who do not believe in Santa for Whatever Reason. Some are just what I will refer to as “Actual Factual” and Only believe what Those down here tell you. But, They don’t cherish The Magic in Him. So, His Home, The North Pole. Actual Factual People will tell you that There is Nothing there, It is only Ice. That part is True, but I like to think of it in a Magical Way and Believe Me, I  have seen quite a Few Christmas Movie Depiction of It. The Debate here is That, does The North Pole Just Appear or Is There some kind of Secret to It? “The Polar Express” claims that It appears out of Nowhere, “The Santa Claus” and “Northpole” claim that It is Secret, Like You go to The North Pole, You go underground under What “Actual Factual” People say is Just Ice and More Ice, and No Typical Person can come in. I would like to go with that Answer. I Believe that in order to get in, You have to do a Very Complex Top Secret-Classified Code. Funny Enough, Only Santa, Mrs. Claus, and a Few Select Elves know this Code. I kind of wish that It was as Easy as The State Farm Jingle, “Like a Good Neighbor, State Farm is There!” only “I believe in The North Pole because Santa is There!” and You Magically appear at The North Pole. Elves are Very Cheery and The Last Thing You would want is One to Tell Everyone the Code and then, alot of People ooooing and awwing while The Elves are trying to Work. Picture a Bunch of News Crews from all over The World interviewing Santa on Christmas Eve. He is a Busy Man, You Know! It would not be Good either because of Those “Actual Factual” People who Do not Believe, May or May not be as Nice. If an Elf does not know The Code then, Someone on The Other Side will let them in. I picture The North Pole to be sort of like a Mix of the Hallmark Movie “Northpole” and “The Polar Express”, It is The Most Beautiful City, Filled with Heaps of Christmas Lights and Music playing all the time. Elves skipping up and down The Street when They are not Working. They do have Elf Parties in The Off Season and on Christmas Day. They do take trips “Down South” for a Little Vacation, most likely during The Summer. They like to have Fun after Work, They go Bowling and Play other Sports. Maybe They go out to Dinner before heading Home for The Night. They have Very Pretty Tiny Houses with lots of Cool Stuff.  Their Workshop can get very Crazy some days, I am sure that It is Calm some days and It is like The New York Stock Exchange when it gets closer to Christmas. I am sure that They get a lot of Calls over Christmas and They transfer as much as They can to Santa, although He is Very Busy checking lists and checking them twice, He does take time to talk to Each Child. Santa must be a Very Good Multi-Tasker! In The Time that He is not taking or making calls, He spends The Evening answering Letters and He must do it VERY Fast. It would be Interesting to watch that happen! In This North Pole Town, There is a lot of Christmas Cheer, Christmas Music, and Most of All Christmas Magic! It makes me wonder though, What do The Elves do after Santa has left for His Christmas Eve Run? Maybe they party all Night, Watch The Kids (ahem...clearing throat) and Adults open Gifts, and then Maybe relax toward The End of The Day. Santa comes back and they all hang out. Maybe They all sit in The Hot Tub and juuust relax. After Christmas, They most likely go on Vacation. So, on The Next Question, How does Santa go around The World in One Night? By The Speed of Light and Of Course, with a His Magic. He goes down The Chimney VERY Quickly. I would think that He could either make Assistant Santas go down The Chimney and Give the Gifts while Santa provides The Magic. Santa does make a few Pit Stops at Those Houses that Deserve a little extra Attention and He randomly picks each year so Don’t Worry Guys. So, then what about The Santa at The Mall or in the Parade? The Actual Factual will say that They are just like You and Me and Only Partly, They are. To Me, They are a Very Special Santa. I Believe not ALL The Santas there are close to The Real One. But, All of them have a Direct Line to Santa at The North Pole. Likely, That is what They do when They are not sitting on The Big Chair. They have to relay Gift Requests and Wishes to “The Big Man”. The Santas though, That legit look like Santa, They have a Very Classified Magical Job. They do Some of The Magic of Santa behind closed doors. Maybe, THAT is what They do during Their Breaks. So, How does Santa know when You are Sleeping, Awake, Good/Bad, and Happy or Sad? I believe that He can see through a Giant Snow globe, up at North Pole Headquarters. Hidden Cameras also work in Some Cases too though! Maybe There is an App for that on His Phone. Remember that Santa does not just bring to Children and Adults, He is also brings a little goody for Dogs and Cats. All in all, These are My Theories about Santa and The North Pole. Even Santa represents The Magical Spirit of Christmas.

Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. Christmas is not about Gifts. But, It is about The Lights, The Music, and The Magic.

December 2, 2015

The Christianville Spirit: The Magic of December

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparkles
December 2, 2015-TCS # 476

Happy December, My Readers! Wow! Can You believe that The Year is almost over?! and, What a Year it has been, but More on that after Christmas. It is that Time of Year again though! It is My Favorite Time of Year, The Month of December filled with Christmas Cheer, Christmas Music, Christmas Lights, and above all, Christmas Magic (And, Believe Me, It can happen!). I know I Write The Following Statement Every Year but, I Love December because of One Holiday, Christmas. I do however have a bit of Different Swing to My “Happy December” Newsletter. Now, I do have to be Honest before I hit the Excitement, This Year does feel a little off because My Brother is in Denver and The Distance is not easy. He will be coming down here for Christmas, so at least We will get to spend Quality Time with Him. Anyway, on to The Excitement. You Guys just do not Understand just How Exciting, This is to Me! The Lights, The Music, The Joy, The Cheer, The Sights, The Sounds, The Movies, and The Magic of Christmas! It makes me feel so Good inside! To Me, Christmas is not about The Gifts and Opening them, I was never one to get excited about Unwrapping Gifts, It took me a little time to get used to Santa but, I Love The Magic of Santa. I Love to see the Worshipping of Jesus’ Birth, If I could spend the Whole Month, Traveling The World and seeing how They celebrate, I would be One Happy Guy!
So, This Story has Two Parts, A Recent Story and A Background Story. You See, I went to Houston over Thanksgiving to see My Uncle Craig, since He is working down there, We decided to go visit him since We had not before. While We were There, on Thanksgiving Night in searching for Something to Do because otherwise, We were going to just drive Home, I thought, “Families go out on Thanksgiving Night to see Christmas Lights, right?” I guess it depends majorly what City that You are in, but Houston did it right! They had a “Christmas Lights on The Street Lighting” that Night and Bonus! It was down the way from Where We Were! So, We all hopped in The Car, Drove near The Houston Galleria area, and Walked to This Event. So, We stood there off on The Side and waited while My Uncle Craig parked the Car and Met Us. So, As We start walking, We can see Spotlights in The Air trying to get People to come see This Lighting Ceremony. Funny thing though and Here is The Background Story, Spotlights, when I was younger, used to startle me, I don’t remember exactly why. Secondly, I have tried several times to attend a “Christmas Lights Lighting”, Once in San Antonio with My Dad going to Christmas Lights on The Riverwalk, We ended up stuck in traffic trying to find a Parking Spot so, We just looked at it from The Road. My Mom and I tried it once at an area called The Shops at Legacy and We passed it as The Tree came on. So, This has never been done before and Knowing My Uncle, It will be Done in Style. My Uncle Craig (not to brag or anything!) but, He is One that Loves to be in Center of The Action in Life (When There is Something to Do, You do it because There is always Something to do) or as Center as He can get. Me? I’m more of a Person to watch things go on from The Sidelines. But, This Time was Different. So, We started walking on The Closed Street and getting closer to The Spotlights and Other Spotlights waving around at The Crowd. My Mom and I are wondering how far We were going to walk in to The Activity. Then, We got to The Spotlights and a Little past it and Found Our Watching Spot. We stood there, watching all the people and of Course, We were told that Santa would be there too and to look out for Him. I watched The People and then, looked up at The Crowd Spotlights and at One Point, They all pointed upward to The Sky looking for Santa. I did not see him because He was further down the street. After Santa came, The Crowd Spotlights turned back toward The Crowd. Then, I could hear a Distant countdown and I knew that The Lights were about to Come On. I heard up to about 7 or 6, before I joined in. 5, 4, 3, 2, 1! Yay! The Lights came on! They came on as Christmas Trees lining The Street! And, Then The Fireworks started. We had to move so that We could see them better. They were Awesome! I have to say, It was Really Awesome to “Ring in Christmas” like that and It was in a way, a Very Different Way of doing it. Because Normally, I would wait until December 1st to “Ring in Christmas” but, It was, in a Word, Unique to Ring in Christmas on Thanksgiving Night when People are just starting to go Black Friday shopping and People are already happy after Eating their Big Family Dinner. So, Why Not? Had it not been My Idea to do that, We probably would have to stayed at Uncle Craig’s Apartment, just hanging out. Good Call! Thank You Uncle Craig for walking us over there! All in all, There can be Christmas Magic, even in Simple Places.

Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. The Magic of Christmas is all around us!

November 24, 2015

The Christianville Spirit: Thanksgiving and What It Means

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparkles
November 24, 2015-TCS # 475

Hello My Readers and Happy Thanksgiving! So, I know that It is a Day early before Newsletter Day but, due to being busy This Thanksgiving. So, I figured that I would write my Thanksgiving Newsletter Today. I hope that You have an Awesome Thanksgiving. Blame it on The Recent Trip to Sweden but, In My Head, I have been calling Thanksgiving, Tacksgiving, because “Thank You” is Tack in Swedish. So, What am I Thankful for? I have a Lot to be Thankful for This Year, among them, The Roof over My Head; God; My Friends and Family, both Smith Family and PTLS Family; and, Of Course, The Crazy-Busy Summer that I had, It was The Best in Years! So, Before I share with You, One of My Great Thanksgiving Newsletters, I want to Teach You something This Thanksgiving. So, How do You say “Thank You” in Different Languages? Well, The Ones I know partly; Spanish, a little bit of Italian, a Little bit of French, “Hello” in Japanese, and Swedish. In Spanish and Italian, “Thank You” sounds roughly the Same. Gracias (pronounced Grau-See-Us) and Grazie (pronounced Graught-See or Graught-See-Yay). But, Swedish is one that I had a bit of Trouble with when I was there, because it sounded Very Short. Thank You is said in 3 Ways, “Thank You” which is Tack (pronounced like “Talk”), Thanks You which is Tack Du (pronounce Tauk-Due) and, The Hardest One, Thanks You so Much which is Tack så Mycket (pronounced Tack-Soha-Meeekyeah). Anyway, Here is one of My Really Great Newsletters about Thanksgiving, I wrote it back in 2013, It is One of My Best Thanksgiving Newsletters. Hope You have Joyous Holiday Season Start and a Very Happy Tacksgiving!
So, I know it is a day early (I wrote this The Day before Thanksgiving), but, Happy Thanksgiving! So, Let me ask you a Question. Yes, It has been a short time since the last question but, This is Good, I Promise You! So, What does “Thanksgiving” mean to You? Does it mean (in a Radio Announcer's Voice): FOOTBALL!? Does it mean Quality Time with Family? or Maybe Shopping on Thanksgiving or God Help You, Black Friday? The Sad thing about Thanksgiving is that although it is an Important Holiday to us Americans, it is often overlooked by My Favorite Holiday, Christmas. Now, don’t get me wrong, I LOVE Christmas and I Live for It but, getting excited about it too early, like listening to Christmas Music or watching Christmas Movies (They started November 1st on The Hallmark Channel, by the way), by the time Christmas Day actually comes, after you have opened your presents, You are burnt out on it. But, I think I’ll explain that more when it gets closer to Christmas, but Anyway, I often think to Myself saying, “Why aren’t there any Thanksgiving Music or Thanksgiving Movies?” I know that there is one song called “The Thanksgiving Song” by Adam Sandler. Okay, I think I am rambling too much on this Christmas vs. Thanksgiving and how I feel about it but as They say in the News, I digress. So, for those still following along, What does Thanksgiving mean to Me? Well, it means many things, For Me, it starts in The Morning (Shocker, since I sleep in till 2:45PM) and I watch the “Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.” It is My All-Time Favorite Tradition of Thanksgiving. I Love watching all the different floats and of course, all bands that are big that year like Selena Gomez, The Jonas Brothers, One Direction, You get the idea.. and, then watching all the balloons (again they are different each year). Then, comes My Favorite Part, when Santa Claus comes and They say that, that marks, “Official Beginning of The Holiday Season”. That always gets me excited! So, after that, Thanksgiving turns toward what it should be; About Quality Time with Family (either Smith Family in Georgia or Ohio, or Immediate Family here in Town). It is also fun watching them cook the Turkey, which My Mom names it every Year. Once it is time for Dinner, then Thanksgiving means Two big Things: Turkey and Stuffing! Of Course, after we are all served, We go around the Table and ask what Everyone is Thankful For. Again, This is what Thanksgiving is majorly about, Being Thankful for What You Have like, The Roof over Your Head (to protect you from Bad Weather); for Me, My very loving Dogs (they’ll hangout with you, You can love on them, and You can talk to them and They don’t judge!); My Readers as well (Because They keep Me writing) and, Finally, The Most Important Thing, Family because Family is all You have! Now, Do Remember that Thanksgiving is not all about Thank Yous but, also Giving, hence the name (In My View), Thanks-Giving. In other words, You give Thanks and Give to others as well. Also, Remember to give extra Thanks to God and Your Family if your going to be one of those People who are going to get up and Fight People to get a Good Deal at The Store or The Mall on Black Friday. But, all in all, here Thanksgiving is a day to Give Thanks and Spend Time with Family. Oh! and Some Good Turkey!

Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. Give Thanks and Cherish What You have, This Thanksgiving. Also, it goes without saying, Happy Thanksgiving!

November 18, 2015

The Christianville Spirit: Questions about God

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparkles
November 18, 2015- TCS # 474

Happy Meredith Day, My Readers! For Those of You who don’t know, I hold a “Best Friends Festival” Each Year from November 16th-20th and Each Day honors All My Friends and I name a Day after a Few Select Friends, among them, My Brother, Michael; Childhood Friends, Brooke; Meredith, and of Course, Whitney; and, Ending with My Best Friend, Steven. Anyway, So in thinking of What I could write about This Week, I could write My View on This Whole Paris thing and Whatnot, but I figured that We (as well as Myself) need a bit of an Alternative Subject that might help Spread Love instead of what Everyone Else is doing. One More Note on Paris then, We’ll move on. To The People of France, I am very Sorry from The Deepest of My Heart for This type of Thing to occur to You but, I know that when It comes to You Guys, You will show us a World of Togetherness. France is Like Texas, You never want to mess with Them! Anyway, Moving on. So, It seems that in The Low Times of My Life, I do what Most People do, I think about God, I have little Upsets with Him every now and then, but It makes me Laugh to hear what Favour He returns to Me. God, of course, Knowing me, knows that I have a Curious Mind in all different ways. So, When I do get upsets at Him, I get these odd theories in My Head about Him. Now, The following that I am going to talk about, I mean it in a Very Loving Curious Way and Not at all Sacrilegious so Please DO NOT be Offended by This! It is Good, I promise you! So, I wonder about God sometimes in the Way of a Human-like Character (and, Not at all like Family Guy’s Version of Him) and Honestly though, He should be like a Human-like Character because of One Reason. You See, Growing Up, My Mom, My Brother, and I were Catholic, which meant that We saw God as a Very Merciless, Angry, and Have to be Feared Type of God. A God that would in a clean way “Smite” You for being upset at Him or Talking about Him in a Goofy Way, like I am now. In Other Words, God was not Relatable to Me. I mean, Okay, I did know that He loved me (which He always does) and He will forgive you to a certain point. When I was in My Teenage into a Young Adult years, We tried many different churches ranging from “God is Cool” to “God is Rad”, You get the idea! So, then, Here comes a Question, How do We make God sound more relatable to us Typical Humans on Earth who have Ups and Downs, and Really not much of a Direct Line to God? Well, My Friend Jeremiah’s Mom told me once that God has a Phone Number (not a Literal One though!) 333 or Trinity, Trinity, Trinity. So, I was talking to My Friend, Deb (Shout Out!) about it and I told her, “God has a Phone Number but, Why not an Address?!” so, Deb being The Awesome Person that She is and Talking about Intelligent but, Funny things, We came up with God’s Address; 333 Christ Ave, Heaventon, KH. KH, by the way, stands for “Kingdom of Heaven”. If You are wondering, Jesus lives next door at 222 Christ Ave. Maybe Jesus does not want His Father reading His Mail! But, Later I wondered a really odd thought, What happens when God, Jesus, or Associated Angels go to The Bathroom? or Really, what are They really like? My Answer, I thought of was that when God or Associated Angels have to go to The Bathroom, I would think it would be either Hail or a Tornado. Better yet, The Hail is The Poop and The Tornado is The Big Flush. Guys, I am sorry but, “Potty Humor” cracks me up sometimes! Anyway, What does God feel about Himself? Okay, I know that He is “The Almighty God” but, Come On, I am sure that God has his Low Days too! Does God take care of Himself? I would hope so! I often wonder How does God spend His Day? You know, does He do Facebook and What would He Post about? I am pretty sure that God watches us and gets in a Fit like “OKAY, THAT’S IT! I’M MAKING THE CALL TODAY!” and Jesus or Associated Angel (like an Assistant)    is like “Calm down God! It is Okay!” I now wonder, What does God do after His Work of Watching all of Us, I mean, He does need Breaks, right? I can only Picture God sitting at The Bar, telling the Bartender about What ever happened that Day or Not wanting to go home yet. Speaking Of, Does God have a Wife? or Is He Married? I would like to say Yes on Both of those. God is Love, right? So, If We can have Love, when why can’t He?! Same Thing with Jesus, He should have a Wife (I would believe that He does!). Does God or Jesus watch Television? I would say Yes! Do They have a Favorite Show? One that They laugh at? That is a Hard Question but, Who knows, Maybe They are Laughing with Us watching Big Bang Theory. What does God do for Fun? Maybe He goes Out to Dinner with a Friend or Co-Worker. Maybe, He goes Dancing to let off some steam from The Day. Maybe He goes to The Movies and Sees a Funny Movie. I would assume that He would like More Positive Movies! For My Swedish PTLS Family Members, Maybe He has Little Fikas during The Day. I can  Picture Him having a Fika with Jesus and Friends having Some Good Pastries and Hot Chocolate (mmmm..That makes me miss Sweden a bit!) Fresh Warm Apple Pastry with Hot Chocolate! that sounds Good! I wonder What God’s Favorite Meal is? That would be Hard. Maybe a Burger and Heap of Pasta! and, Finally, My Last Relatable Question, What kind of Music does God like? Maybe, Soft Rock, Pop, or Rock and Roll. I can Picture Him jamming out to a Really Good Rock Song! So, Now that I have mentioned this, Does that make God more Relatable? Guys, I really hope so! Because maybe if He is more Relatable, Maybe People will “call” or “mail” Him and Not be Afraid of Him. All in all, I believe that God is just like You and Me.

Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. Belief and Faith goes a Long Way!

November 11, 2015

The Christianville Spirit: 10th Anniversary-Who I Want To Be

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparkles
November 11, 2015-TCS # 473

Happy Veterans Day, My Readers! For Those Who Live in The United States, Today is a Day to honor Our War Veterans and I believe This One is special because it has been 60 Years since The Vietnam War. So, Veterans of War, from The Bottom of My Heart, I thank you for All Your Service and Protecting My Country. So, on to This Week’s Newsletter, as well as it being Veteran’s Day, It also 11-11 and According to Numerology, There is a New Moon and It can help with Destiny. So, As We know, over the Past Couple Weeks in honor of The Christianville Spirit’s 10th Anniversary, We have talked about Who I was (in The Past), Who I am (The Present), so It seems only fitting that I talk about Who I want to be (The Future). For Many, The Future is quite Scary. It is like Reading a Book and It gets really Good like in a Romance Novel, The Couple is FINALLY going to either Meet or Admit that They love eachother (that is just me, a Romantic!); Adventure: News Comes that They are going to Paris! (This is sort of a Reference to “The Rugrats Movie”) ; Action: They are ready to climb a Big Wall like El Capiton in California! (Came up with This One on My Own); Horror: They go into a Dark Garage with a Running Car next to it! (Yeah.. That is a Geico Commercial, but ALL Horror begins with something like that!), but it stops in The Middle and follows with Empty Pages saying “Finish This Story..and, The Best Completion of The Story, We will publish it in a Few Years!” Then, It is up to You to Write the Rest of a Good Story. So, Picture that for a Second and Think of What Kind of Story, This Book is. No Ones‘ Book is Perfect, Right. Interactive Newsletter Question here, What type of Story is Your Life Book and Where are you at in This Book? It could be a Romance, an Action, An Adventure, or Yes, Even Horror (Not Judging Here!). So, What about My Story? Well, I believe I have not hit the “Clincher” of My Book yet but, I sure am close though! The Future for Me is a Little Scary, but It is going to be Awesome. So, in 10 Years from Now, I should have Lots of Things going in My Life. I am still hoping for That Geography-Related 10 to 3 Job, I have thought of. In 10 Years, I will likely be still writing, by then I should be at, at least 1000 Newsletters by then. I think that should be a Good Goal to lead off of, 1000 Newsletters. I have said Time and Time again, that I do want to Live near My Family, both Smith Family and PTLS Family. That would be Awesome, if I could live near Smith Family and Have My Favorite PTLS Family Members in The Same Area too! That would be Perfect! In My PTLS Life, I will be where I am Today, as Self-Appointed PTLS Ambassador. I will represent PTLS in Many Ways and Probably making a Lot of Trips around The World to see them and Talk to Them. I will likely be a part of Speaking Times with PTLS Family Members, as if I don’t do that Already. In My Personal Life, in 10 Years, I WILL have an SO (Internet Speak for Significant Other). By Then, I should have a Wife who I am Happily Married, whether it is Bridgett Lafleur or not. She will be tagging along in My PTLS Trips and We will do Lots of Traveling too. It will be Amazing how much Traveling We will do. Now, I do want to Travel, but Not like A Far-Flung Place each Month, I think that would a Bit too much for Me, or at least that is what Present Me is thinking anyway. The Thing that probably Scares me the most Is My Future Living Situation. I plan on Living with Bridgett and Her Dad for a while and then, Her and I will live together once We get Married. But, Here is a Question and a Scary One to Me, What about My Mom? Well, I Love My Mom heaps and heaps alot! So, with that said, I want to be an Independent Adult But, Also Live near My Mom. Ideally, Bridgett (or Said Wife, Bridgett or Not) and I will live Together, and My Mom will live Next Door or Down the Street, as Long as it is within a Short Distance from Each Other. That is so that She can help with Anything that I need. I would love to live in a House that is Connected, Wife and I (or just I) just the Small “In-Law Suite” and Mom lives in The Main House, but You can’t live with Your Mom forever. BUT, I do want Her close by and That does not count as “Living under Mom’s Roof”. That whole Situation, it does concern me and I hope My Mom feels Good about it. Now, Where My Mom will be in 10 Years is a Story for All of us to figure out. But, by then, She should have a Husband and Husband’s Family as well. If Said Husband comes with Kids (like Young Adults) that would be Another Story but, It would be Okay too though. As far as My Brother is concerned, I want to make sure that He lives nearby as Well. You need Your Brother’s Partnership too, You Know! Someone to hang out with for a While when You need Guy Time away from Mom or Wife, and His Future Wife too. In 10 Years, I would hope that My Brother has a Wife too and He is Happily Married, and They have as many Adventures as Myself and My Wife. Just to make sure to Meet Together throughout The Year for Family Time. I will make sure of that, that either of us, do get Quality Time together, that is a Must. I do want to be Busy with Life, Fun, and Adventure. But, to be Fair, I don’t want to be too Busy to forget What Family means and Will Always mean to Me. I am pretty sure that My Said Wife will certainly make sure of that also. My Said Wife Will be a Family Person as well as Understanding, Loving, and Most of all having a Loving relationship with God and Jesus. Because God must be put first in Our Life and Really, in Everything that We do. All in all, in 10 Years, I would think that My Life Book would be one great Hallmark Movie!

Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. Life is a Book, It has many Written and Unwritten Pages!

November 4, 2015

The Christianville Spirit: 10th Year Anniversary-Who I am and Who I have Become

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparkles!
November 4, 2015-TCS # 472
(10th Anniversary Newsletter)

Happy 10th Anniversary, My Readers! Yes, That is Right, Officially I have been writing to You for 10 Years. Now, Most of You, especially Most of My PTLS Family, have not been with Me all these 10 Years, only because PTLS had not been named until 2007 and many had not been diagnosed yet. One PTLS Member put it in a bit of perspective for Me, as well My Neighbor across The Street. The Truth is, Most of My PTLS Family when I started writing, Had not even had Kids (or Dreamed of It, Either!) and Not even knowing that They could have a Rare Duplication that would change their Whole Life. My Neighbor told me that I was The Writer of PTLS, Before There even was a PTLS or Before PTLS got as Big as It is now. With that said though, My Own Life was Changed just as much as Most of My PTLS Family! Funny how that Happens, Right?! Anyway, Since 10 Years ago, I had a ton of Adventures that really defined My Life today. Among Them, and I will try My Best to Reference Them for You!, Potocki-Lupski Syndrome or PTLS was Named (Newsletter 37, March 2007); I was Photographed by a Fashion Photographer named Rick who now Photographs Those with Special Needs (Reference Newsletter Number 79, November 2007);  I got to Ride in Traffic Helicopter (Newsletter 75 and 74, October 2007), and Many others including going to Sweden and The UK. There were a few Sad Moments in My Newsletter History, Popi (My Mom’s Dad) past away in April of 2008; Our Dogs, Sophie (September 2008) and Mandy (October 2013) passed away, respectfully. The Most Scariest Moment for Me was what We refer to Notoriously as “The Storm without a Siren” (Newsletter 101; April 10th of 2008). In My Early Days of Writing, I did not a Scheduled Writing Time, so It started Sporadically. My Newsletter began with Writing like a Newspaper Stories from Christianville (which gave it a “Newspaper” Feel), It then moved on to “Personal News”, “Christianville/State News”, and “C. Metro Commentary” layout. After That, I started Writing a few Series about Life and Family Events. and, Finally, It turned into The Format that I use now. I have changed the Fonts of My Newsletter a couple times. At The Beginning of The Year, I always change My Tag Line which I came up with until a Few Years Ago when I ask My Readers for suggestions. Every Year, I must do what I now call “The Big Three”, a Christmas Newsletter; A Year-In-Review Newsletter, and a “Happy New Year!” Newsletter. I can see a lot of My Progress in The Content of My Newsletters when I go through My Newsletter Records. I have documented pretty much Everything important to Me in My Life and I am very proud of All My Writings!
As You can see a lot was Happened in Our Family (Smith and PTLS) and For Me and My Mom. Speaking of PTLS, We did not have an Official PTLS Conference until 2009 in Houston (in June of 2009), That actually was a Great Experience. Since then, I have appointed Myself (in the Most Humble Way) as The Ambassador of PTLS and have helped in the best way that I can with Spreading Awareness and Understanding Life with Potocki-Lupski Syndrome.
On a Personal Level, In The Time that I have been writing, I got a Job working as a “PlayBall Attendant” (Someone who greets People and Passes out Programs) at The Frisco Roughriders. Sometimes, I look back and Remember that, that was a Really Fun Job to do and I did it Very Well. Of Course, I have had 2 Girlfriends in My Life (One in My 10 Years of Writing), I did go to Homecoming (which is Sort of like Prom in Texas, It is a Very Big Deal!), and Now, In Terms of Love Life, I came up with My Soulmate’s Name, Bridgett, who I should be close to meeting hopefully soon if I have not already! It does make me wonder talking about All that I have Done, What will the Next 10 Years be like? All in all, This 10 Year Run has been awesome and I can not wait to see Where I am in the next 10 Years! I Thank You from The Bottom of My Heart for Joining Me in This Wild Journey! You Guys are Awesome and You keep me going!

Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. Raise Your Glass and say “Cheers” (Skål, Salute, Salude). Happy 10th Year to All of Us!

October 28, 2015

The Christianville Spirit: 10th Anniversary-Who I Was

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparkles
October 28, 2015-TCS # 471

Hello, My Readers! It is that time of Year again, well, Actually that is What I would normally be writing about This Week considering that It is Halloween and I’m not much of a Fan, But, These Next Two Weeks are Very Special to Me! It is Special because This Sunday is The 10th Anniversary of My Newsletter, The Christianville Spirit. Yes, I can not believe it either, I have been writing this Newsletter since 2005 (Ten Years Ago!). You Know, It is Amazing to look at My Life at Where I was 10 Years Ago and More like, How have I changed since Then. So, Over My 10th Year Anniversary, I am going to Show You, The Me before and The Me Presently. In Many Ways, both personally and In My Newsletter I have changed. So, Let’s Jump into The History Books, Shall We?! (Tape Rewinding with Funny Noises) We come back on November of 2005. This was before My Theory about Bridgett, Before Carol Holiday, To The Beginning of My Newsletter. I was still in High School in a Repeat of 10th Grade which I called Grade 10.5. (Actually, Now that I am looking at My Records, I was just beginning My 11th Year of High School). Life was Great for Me, I had a Best Friend named Steven and Of Course, Karleen was One of My Best Friends too. I would go over to Steven’s House quite often to Play on The Computer or Video Games, We would sometimes go to Sunday School at The Church down the street from My House. Believe Me though, I was not as Social as I am Now. I believe Steven and I actually hung out more Outside of School that Summer. I Believe We actually started hanging out Outside of School The Year before. In Terms of Internet Social Life, At The Time There was Myspace but, There was not a Facebook then. Even so, I was not comfortable getting on What was then, Social Media. So, Instead I would sit on My Computer doing What was called AIM or America Online Instant Messenger. I wrote Like THIS, IN ALL CAPS, ALL THE TIME! I did not realize until My Childhood Friend told me that Writing in All Caps was considered Yelling or with a lot of Emphasis, Either Way I thought it was Cool to Write in All Caps because that was The Way I wrote in Handwriting. Somehow, looking on it now, I probably thought that If You wrote in All Caps in Handwriting, then You wrote it in Typing. At That Time, Technology was not so far then, Yes They had IPods but, I didn’t really need one because I could play CDs or Download The Music from The CD to My Computer. By The Way, My Mom and I figured that at the Time, Considering that I was a bit behind socially compared to My Peers in 11th Grade, Senior High School as It is referred to in Plano, It was Better to hold me back another year for 10th Grade, Hence The Term that Steven and I came up with as Grade 10.5 (or 10.5 Grade). That and It helped that I would also Graduate with My Brother instead of separately. Up to The Point, I had only 1 Girlfriend named Ali. I am not sure if I was ready yet for Dating or so. I tried Dating Ali at one time probably because I had a huge Crush on Her and It was The Second Time that I had a Crush on Her. I know this is hard to Believe but, Where Today I am 28 Years Old, I was 18 Years Old at That Time. I had just became an “Official Adult” which meant that My Mom and I had to get Guardianship to help take care of Me. At The Time, I had not Worked before, but The Next Year of 2006, that Summer I started working at the Local Baseball Field. As for The PTLS World, PTLS or Potocki-Lupski Syndrome was around but, It had not been named yet. It was then called “A Duplication of Chromosome 17”. At The Time, There were only a Few Families that had Kids with PTLS, This was before They were referred to as “PTLS Family Members”. With My Newsletter starting, My Mom told me that I should write a Blog as a Way to stay busy after High School, at the time, I was not as Comfortable about Writing Publicly yet, so I sent them out as an Email to Family and a Few Friends. Over Time, that would eventually grow and I started posting on a Yahoo 360! Social Media Site, a Year or so after, and Eventually leading to The Site where I presently Write Today. I wrote My Newsletter (or then, called a ‘Newspaper’) in sort of a Newsy Style, Writing The Date above and Location. The First Newsletter starts with The Date in Caps, “NOVEMBER 1, 2005” and Then, “DOWNTOWN CHRISTIANVILLE” as The Next Part. The Christianville Spirit, By The Way, I came up with along with Information about My Made-City of Christianville, Tennessee. I figured that The ‘Newspaper‘ of Christianville needed a Unique Name besides the Typical names for Newspapers and then, The Christianville Spirit was Born! All in all, That is Who I was back then and I had lots of Changes and Adventures ahead of Me! 

Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. Change is Painful but, So is Sitting Still.   

October 21, 2015

The Christianville Spirit: Back to The Future Day!

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparkles
October 21, 2015-TCS # 470

Great Scott, My Readers! It is a Very Special Day Today! Very Special in terms of History. For Those of Us who grew up in The 90’s and Earlier, Today is The Day that The so-called “Future” becomes The Present! What I am referring to is of course, The Now Classic Movie, Back to The Future. It Is One of Many that are Classic Time Travel Movies that there have been in The Movie World. What is Funny about that, Is that Most Time Travel type of Movies deal with going into The Past. SPOILER ALERT Here! That was Back to The Future The Original. Where Today comes in is, in Back to The Future Part II(2) when Marty Mcfly and Doc come to The Future. You See, We kinda knew that Eventually That Movie would come to Today, People post about it on Facebook, All Freaking Out like “Today is The Day!” when it really is not. Don’t Believe Everything on The Internet People! But, Actually, Newsletter Day, Wednesday, October 21st, of 2015 is Actually The Day. It is Interesting to Study The Parallels of The Predictions of 2015 versus The Actual 2015. Now, Remember that 2015 (Written back then as Two-Thousand Fifteen, Where as Today it is said Twenty-Fifteen) was a Long Way into The Future. This is Majorly Considering that The Film was made back in 1989 and They were predicting something at least 30 Years ahead! Now, Some of the stuff like Jaws in It’s 17th Sequel was a Little Crazy, Flying Cars (We are Working on that!), Hover Boards (Didn’t You see Tony Hawk that One Time?!), 80’s Cafes (hmm..Sort of!), and Texaco still in Business (I am sure that We all thought that was Crazy too!). But, What about those Little Predictions like A Car for 999.99 (That is True!), Wearable Technology (Hello, Google Glass!), Picture in Picture with a Hundred Channels! (Oh You Betcha!), and Also, The Mentioning of The Chicago Cubs winning The World Series (Now, That actually could Happen!). A Side Note about that, The Cubs are actually in The Playoffs, which They have not won in a VERY Long Time! Now, Let’s Talk about Other Thoughts in This Movie , They predicted one of The Characters was going become The First Black Mayor. They were Close! Did We ever think back in The 90’s and Earlier that We would have a Black President? Most likely not! I am not trying to sound Offensive and I am Sorry if I do. Now, I know, I know, The President thing isn’t really working out as We had Hoped, perhaps We choose The Wrong Black President? Well, Regardless, The Day that happened I have to admit I was Pretty Excited about that. One Thing that They sort of mention in The Movie is How expensive Everything is, and Unfortunately that is True. I mean, Gasoline back in 1989 was like around a $1.00 per Gallon and Today, It is $1.85 a Gallon (It used to be more like, Over $3.00 A Gallon!). Technology was Most Certainly a Prediction! The Wearable Technology, Handheld Devices, Hundreds of Channels, and more. When I was growing up, We had Nintendo 64 and Outside. If You DID get on The Internet, You had to Sign In via a Phone Line and Hear the Awful-Screechy Noise then You were Online, Back then known as America Online or AOL for Short. Back Then, I never pictured any of Those Things I mentioned, that is except for Robots. Today, We have all sorts of Robots! On a Personal Level, I never thought that I would be where I am Today, As Social as I am (I used to anxious just to go to a School Dance!), Mature as I am, and Talking, while I did not do for a Very Long Time. Back then, in 1989 anyway, I was only 2 Years Old! I had not even been Diagnosed yet!  I was Just Me and I still think that! I’m sure My Mom never thought that She would be President of The PTLS Foundation because of Her 2-Year Old Son that would get Diagnosed later with Duplication 17p11.2, leading to Conferences, Meeting Families, and All the Way up to Where We are Today. So, Back to The Movie, After Today, “The Future” that They went to is actually going to become The Past! All in all, It leaves me to Wonder what The World will be like in another 30 Years, The Year 2045 and I will be 58 Years Old! Great Scott! That is a Scary thought!

Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. What do You think is In The Future for You?

October 13, 2015

The Christianville Spirit: Meeting PTLS Members in Sweden and UK

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparkles
October 14, 2015-TCS # 469

Surprise, My Readers! Yes, I know, it is a Day Early (Shocker!) but, I have a Busy Week ahead of Me, so I am going to write This Newsletter Today instead of Wednesday, All though It is already Wednesday in Australia and Europe! Anyway, So Last Week I explained about All The Fun I had Over in Sweden and The United Kingdom, but, Here is a bit of a Thing, I did not focus as much on The “PTLS Business Trip” side of It. So, That is What I am going to do! So, Like I said, Last Week, I went to Sweden and The UK on Our “PTLS Business Trip”, We probably should refer to it as a “PTLS Speaking Tour”. Now, What is Funny about This Far-Flung Trip to Europe is that usually Worldly PTLS Family Members come to Me. In other words, They are The Ones who travel halfway around The World to The US, usually in The PTLS Capitol of Houston at Our PTLS Conference and Sometimes in between. Remember when We hung out with the PTLS Members from Australia that came to Dallas? That was actually 2 Months Ago! I digress. Anyway, This Trip was Very Much a Role Reversal, Where I am going to See Them. Now, that has happened with PTLS Members in The US but, Never those from other Parts of The World. The First “Role Reversal” is going to Sweden. Now, Funny Enough, I have been Dreaming about going to Sweden because It’s Nature is just stunning! Many Other Reasons as well in terms of Beauty. So, My Mom told me that We are going to Stockholm, Sweden to Speak about PTLS, I literally jumped for Joy. So, The Question that I am sure that You are beggingly asking is, So Come On Now, What was it like?! Well, First of All, When You talk to PTLS Members, You read Their Name, and You see a Small Picture next to Their Name and You can’t help but Think, “Oh! (Insert PTLS Member Here), Who am I kidding, I will never meet that Person! They will just be a PTLS Members Name on a Screen!” I like to say that It is like meeting a Movie or Television Star, You know that They are in fact an Actual Person, but They are not real in Your Head. When You Finally Meet Them, You think, “Oh My Lord, They are Real!” I had that feeling with PTLS Member, Josefine. We had known Josefine for at least 4 or 5 Years, We Skyped several times in That Time. Because I have seen Josefine’s Face on Facebook, I knew who it was. Some PTLS Members who have not been around as Long, like PTLS Member, Caroline of Sweden (Double Shoutout!), You kind of have to Refresh your Mind about Them or They just introduce themselves and then, check Facebook later and see, Ohhh! That is Who They are! Two (of Many) PTLS Members that I found fun to Talk to were Caroline, Johan, and Josefine of Sweden (Let’s not forget Camilla of Norway!). It was really cool to talk to Them because They shared My Fascination about Their Part of The World and Understood Why I am Fascinated by It! Camilla, I should mention was another Major PTLS Member that was a Must Meet on My List of Members to Meet. We met her when We saw The Changing of The Guard in Sweden along with Her Lovely Daughter. I also met Three Adult Boys that had PTLS, They mainly spoke Norwegian so, It was Hard to talk to Them. Luckily though, They understood English more than They spoke it. Wish I would have Known That! The Doctors that We met, They were pretty Awesome and Of Course, They were the ones who Invited us over there and really started this Whole “PTLS Speaking Tour” Trip. I was Very Honoured (Euro Version of “Honored”) to have flown across The Atlantic (aka “The Pond”) to Meet All the PTLS Members and Come to Sweden. What made it really Awesome was that on The Second and Third Day in Stockholm, We “walked and talked” while strolling through Stockholm. A bit of Mention here, Swedes walk Very Fast and They WILL run You down if You are in Their Way. And, Do Not Forget about The Biker Right-of-Way too! We ran one into The Fence accidentally when Walking from The Conference to Our Hotel, Opps! Sorry! After Soaking in The Culture of Sweden, (I have never been so Emerced into The Culture!), We flew to Part 2 of Our Adventure to The UK. PTLS Member, Delphine drove us to Her House where We had Our Gathering The Next Day. Meeting Delphine was a Major One for Me because Her, Myself, and Her Son Hugo, FaceTime pretty much Every Saturday or Sunday. So, Again, I had that “Holy Schnikies, She is Real” Moment!. You Know, I did not think of This until I got Home but, Hers was The First PTLS Members‘ House that We spend the Night at! It was Wonderful, I would totally do it again! Of Course, On The Way to Her House, I felt like I “Hit The Wall” and Had a Post-Stockholm Meltdown in front of Her. Not Very Proud of that, but that was Something I had never done. So, In a Way, It was a Learning Experience for Both of Us! I was Okay after though! It probably was All The Excitement from Dreams coming true in Stockholm and Meeting Delphine, who was a Major PTLS Member to Meet, It really catches up with You! So, after The Fun Evening in Stratford-Upon-Avon (Locally called “Stratford”), We had Our Gathering. So, I helped greet people to Come In. Some PTLS Members I remembered instantly and Others took a Bit more of an Introduction. PTLS Member, Angela was a Highlight because I remember them sending me Maps and I sent them a Gift back. Another Person that Came was a Sister-In-Law of a PTLS Member, Chalky. I had Questions for Her about The Wedding that she went to a Couple Months Before. Another Major PTLS Member to Meet (among Many!) was Sally and Her PTLS Adult Son. Us PTLSers are a Bit shy when We meet other PTLSers, so We did not talk as much as We wanted to, but That is Okay. Progress! And, Reconnecting with My Good Buddy, Edward and His Mom. All in all, It was Really Awesome to finally meet and talk with So Many People that I have gotten to Know very well. It was The Best Trip that I have ever taken!

Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. Having Dreams True is Very Important to Me!

October 7, 2015

The Christianville Spirit: Trip to Stockholm & London

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparkles
October 7, 2015-TCS # 468

Welcome Back, My Readers! We are finally back on My Newsletter’s Weekly Schedule and I am Ready to Roll! So, About That Trip...One Word, It was Awesome. That is All! Hehe, Just Kidding! I am going to tell you all about it. You See, A Couple Months Ago before The PTLS Conference, My Mom told me that We might go to Stockholm to Speak about PTLS; Keyword here, Might! The Reason being because Fine Doctors of a Hospital in Stockholm, Sweden wanted to have a Little Conference about PTLS, problem was, They did not know a whole lot about PTLS. So, They called Doctor Lupski and asked for Him to come, and At That Moment, He could not. Anyway, so Doctor Lupski recommended My Mom to come speak, Surprise! It is Solid!, and So Begins a Destiny-Changing Adventure. So, It started with Us leaving Home at 2:11Pm on a Monday, I have been seeing Lots of 11s before This Point so I knew It was Destiny. I believe that Nothing is ever a Coincidence, It is always part of Our Destiny. I feared that I may not be able to handle it, but, Surprisingly It felt Natural, It felt Right. We got to walk through The Terminals of DFW as well as London Heathrow while We waited, and On to Stockholm, We go! It is a Cloudy Day as We arrive in Stockholm, It has been Quite a Long Day of Traveling, not to mention Very Loud and Annoying People sitting behind us from Dallas to London, Overnight. But, None The Less, as Long as I looked Outside in the Sun or did activities to keep me moving, I stayed Awake. Reading and Writing, not so much! My First Impressions of Sweden was Quite Awesome, Very Green, Lots of Trees, and Cleanliness. We land in Stockholm, Go through Customs, and Our Trusty Friend, Monica is standing there with a Swedish Flag on a Stick saying “Welcome to Sweden!” as The Doors open. We then Rode a Bus to Our Hotel near The Hospital that We were speaking at. Kinda had a Mishap of Failing to Press The Stop Button over Our Head when We got to The Hotel, so We had to stand a while at a Nice-and-Clean Bus Stop to Pick up Another Bus to take us to Our Hotel. Oh, and Did I mention, That it was Raining that Day. This is An Adventure, Remember! Sometimes, The Oddest Things to happen on A Trip always Tell The Best Stories! Anyway, After We got settled, a Little Confusion with Our Room and who’s It was, We headed out to Dinner with Monica and Her Lovely Ex-Pat Friend, Nancy. We went to Place that at The Time, I could not Pronounce. (It was Trannen, by the way) in Odengaten. I’m not sure if My Mom tasted Her Food because of Asking so Many Questions about Concerns for Our PTLS Family Members, She was getting as Much Information as Possible. Meanwhile, I was Enjoying My Meal. I have to say that They had The Best Swedish Meatballs of This Whole Trip! Odengaten, That was My Focal Point of Knowing where I was. Because The Streets in Stockholm had Very Long and Hard Names to say, I just remember “Odengaten” and then, I knew how to get back. First Full Day in Stockholm was Sighting Seeing with Our Friend, Monica. We visited The Stockholm City Hall where The Nobel Prize Banquet is as well as The Awesomely Awesome, Gold Room with in fact, REAL Gold. It is Awesome to Walk the Stairs of The Footsteps of Nobel Prize Winners who are Very Intelligent People! My Mom was learning alot about Sweden’s Healthcare and Education compared to The US from Monica.
After That, We walked through The City Center and had Our Traditional “Fika” in The Middle of Our Tour. In Sweden, You must have a Fika! By The Way, Fika in a The Best Term of Mind, is basically a Coffee Break with Family, Friends, Co-Workers, or All of The Above. You go to Work at about 8:00AM, Fika # 1 at Maybe 10 or so, Go back to Work, Lunch, Fika # 2, Work some more and, then Off around 4:30PM at least. People are Very Happy over There, No Stress, Everyone gets Free Healthcare & Education, Paid Paternity Leave, and At Least 6 Weeks of Vacation (ahem..Holiday Time). Swedes are a bit Reserved  at First, They want You to prove Yourself, and Then, You are pretty much on Their Party Guest Lists for Life as long as You take Your Shoes off at The Door and You are Punctual (Swedes are Very Punctual). Jobs, You must Speak Swedish First before Getting a Job. It is Done, Swedish First and then, English. BUT, Once You have a Job, You are Set for Life as There is Too Much Paper Work to Fire You. Sweden is Very Clean, cleaner than Any City I have been to! Anyway though, We walked through a Swedish Department Store called Åhlens and It was Pretty Cool. I have to say that Their Dairy Section in The Swedish Grocery Store is Larger than I have ever seen! Next, We walked through The Farmers Market and Shopping Area near “Queens Street” which is a Pedestrian Roadway. That is another Thing, I should mention, Swedes Walk ALOT! In the 3 Days, We were there, We walked about 10 Kilometers each day (Equivalent to about 6 Miles). They Bike, Walk, and Take Public Transportation, It is a wonder Why They are One of The Happiest Countries and Healthiest Countries in The World! After Walking through The Main Drag of The City Center, We hopped on a Rail bus that took us to One of The Many Islands of Stockholm called Djürgården (This Name for Me, was Very Hard to Pronounce at First), I referred to It as “The Nature Island”, because in a way, That is What it was. It had a Museum/Zoo called Skansen, that is dedicated to Sweden’s Nature. We walked through Some Very Stunning Nature and That is Where Monica walks Every Friday with a few of Her Friends. I have to say, It was truly something to Marvel At. We did go to a Nice Restaurant there as well.  We did walk near The ABBA Museum and Take Pictures there. After that, We said goodbye to Monica for The Night, My Mom and I hopped on The Bus to go back to The Hotel, We did get a bit lost for a second on The Way back but, Thank God for Google Maps app. The 2nd Day, We met PTLS Member, Josefine and Her Boyfriend as well as PTLS Members, Camilla and Her Daughter and We toured around. Again, I’m not sure if My Mom saw Everything because She was trying to learn from The Views of The PTLS Family Members living in Scandinavia. 
This Time, We went to Gamla Stan (Stockholm Old Town) and Saw The Changing of The Guard at The Royal Palace. We also saw Another Swedish Department Store called NK and It had 6 Floors. After 2 Lovely Days of Sightseeing, It was Time to get to Business! The Evening of Day 2, We had a Nice Dinner with PTLS Family Members from Norway, Sweden, Denmark, and Germany while My Mom had a Business Meeting with The Doctors. One of The Doctors was Nice enough to let me taste Her Cured Salmon. The Next Day, was The Speaking at The Hospital to Swedish Geneticists. First, The Swedish Geneticist, talked about PTLS in Swedish (Again Things have to be done in Swedish first!) and Then, My Mom followed up with Talking about PTLS for 2 and a Half Hours. And a Break, Lunch, and Couple More Hours after that. I was So Beyond Proud of My Mom! She does really well speaking to such a Large Crowd like that! The Fine Doctors said that We are Welcome Back at Anytime. After that, The Next Day, We flew to London for Part 2 of Our PTLS Speaking Tour. Now, I have to say though, London Heathrow Airport is by far The Most Complicated Airport there is, Especially Terminal 5! At This Point in the Trip, I was so Overwhelmed for all The Excitement and Dreams coming True in Sweden that I did not know what to do with Myself! So, I had a little Meltdown on The Way to the House of Our UK Host, Delphine. But, after that, I was Okay. We got settled in and Calmed down a Bit and then, We went to Dinner at a Rooftop Restaurant in Stratford-Upon-Avon. It is was not just ANY Restaurant, It was a Restaurant at The Shakespeare Theater! It was So Awesome! Again, There goes My Mom asking Questions and Gathering Information. She really Learned alot! The Next Day, We had a Huge Gathering to share the Knowledge from The Doctors and All The Research My Mom has been doing, and Hearing Stories to add to Her Research. My Mom had a Phone Conversation with A Doctor from A Hospital there to set up something in The Near Future and One of The Organizations there. I found it Really Nice to meet all The PTLS Members that I have been talking with for Many Years. The Last Day of Our Trip, We took the train down to London and Met More PTLS Members as well as Seeing The Sights that We could see in One Day. The Major Ones; Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, Tower Bridge, and a “Proper English Pub”. After All that, We got on a Plane the Next Morning and Headed Home. All in All, It was an Awesome, Destiny-Changing, Dreams coming True, Super Fast, PTLS Business Trip!

Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. Thank You (Takk Du!) to Everyone involved! 

October 1, 2015

The Christianville Spirit: My Readers Choice Rerun

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparkles
September 30, 2015-TCS # 467

Alright, My Readers! So, I am finally back Home from My PTLS Business Trip! I am very happy to Be Home but, at The Same Time, I am working on recovering from Such an Awesome Trip. You Know What They say, You know it was a Good Trip when You are Very Tired, but more of a Happy Tired not a Stressed Out Overwhelmed Tired. Anyway, So This Week I am going to do a Re-run and Next Week, We will pick up to My Newsletter Schedule as usual. So, This Newsletter was written back on June 19th of 2013, Newsletter Number 356 for Reference. At This Time in My Life, I had figured that I would let My Readers pick what I wrote about in My Newsletter and This is The Result. Enjoy!

So, My Readers, I decided to do something different for This Week’s Newsletter. You See, On Facebook, I decided that instead giving My Readers topics that don’t always interest them or that they don’t want to hear about, I decided to give you, My Readers, the power to choose what I write. My Choices I came up with were My View on Something, PTLS Related, An Adventure/Trip, A Life Event and An Accomplishment. The Winner, to My Surprise, was An Accomplishment. So, That is what I am writing this week, Thanks to the input of My Readers. Enjoy!
So, To spotlight, one accomplishment would be hard to pick, so I will do a couple of them. In My Head Anyway, This Accomplishment is a big one (although there are bigger). You See, when I was in High School in 10th Grade, The Schedule gave me a sort-of “Job Study Period.”  It turned out that there wasn’t enough to keep me busy. So, one day the Vice Principal assigned me to a very important job, what was known as “Parking Lot Duty.” So, The Vice Principal took me around The Teacher Parking Lot and said, “These Green (Keystone Looking) Tags represent The Teachers and Those 3 white painted lines for Visitors” and he told me that any person who had one of those “Keystone Looking” Tags that parked in the wrong place that I had my clipboard that I had to write the License Plate number. After a couple trial runs, I got the hang of it and I was used to doing “Parking Lot Duty” at the time. Considering that I am Routine Oriented and Am Big On Rules, I was excited about getting to do it everyday. Eventually, though, it caught up with me and My Own Teachers would tell me not to write them up because they took the wrong car to School and forgot their Tag. They helped by describing where the car was and what color. But, to me, I was on The Rules, that and by the time I got out there, I would forget what they told me and without realizing it, I wrote them up anyway. At the end of The School Year, I got 100% Compliance that Year. After many Teachers were wondering, who I was and who was writing them up. I got an award near the end of the School Year for “Parking Lot Duty” that I didn’t even know that I had won. There was an Award Ceremony that I didn’t go to because I thought that I wouldn’t get an award that I got one anyway. So, I personally count that more as a Professional Accomplishment. The next Accomplishment is something that My Mom is proud of. You See, do you remember My Mom and I went to Houston to meet this wonderful Photographer who is now our buddy? This was a while ago, so it is okay if you don’t remember. Anyway, Before we all had our “Model Pictures” taken if you will, We went to a Presentation at the Baylor College of Medicine to show all his photos that he has taken of People with various Special Needs since the beginning. Anyway, after they showed all the pictures, Dr. Potocki & Dr. Lupski, and Other Doctors as well as My Mom joined a little panel in front of Over 200 Medical Students for a program called “Compassion and The Art of Medicine.” Dr. Potocki told me the night before that I could join if I wanted to. When the panel started, I was a little nervous sitting in the audience and then, Dr. Potocki said, “We also have Julie’s Son, Christian here if he would like to come up” and I sat there for a second and I thought, Okay, I might as well. After I sat down with everyone, They had a microphone for everyone to pass around and Of Course, with every question, they passed it to me. Eventually, I got the hang of it and used to them passing the Mic to each person. Now, as My Mom likes to say, it didn’t go without me having People in Tears with the things I said. I even polled the audience to see who looked at people from The Inside (Meaning Inner Beauty), instead of The Outside (Meaning Outer Beauty, like someone’s appearance) and only a few hands came up and I said, “God Bless You Guys! Because We need to see the Inner Beauty of People, Not Outer Beauty.” I told people that sometimes It is hard to see the Inner Beauty because you are too fixated on the outside and Yes, even I have done that a time or two. One of the Most Inspirational Things I said was (as I quote Myself from My Records), “Most People only look at the outside of others. That is all they see and are judged on. You can brush your hair, and put on Makeup, but Someone is still going to tell you, “Man, You Look Ugly!” Then, Of Course, there was the very daring thing I said that My Mom LOVES to Reference, I told Over 200 Medical Students and Doctors that, “Having Special Needs is not like living in Hell or anything.” After the panel was over, I just stood there looking at everyone answering questions and the next thing I had a line of Medical Students and Doctors Thanking Me for being so honest and Asking different questions. So, I’m really proud of this accomplishment because I had to talk in front of so many people. A Minor Accomplishment that I did was that I rode in a “Traffic Helicopter” during TV & Radio 5 O’ Clock Traffic Report and Told to keep my eyes peeled from Traffic Trouble. They were impressed that I knew where I was in all parts of the city. they told me that I was welcome back anytime, that was a Fun Accomplishment! All in All, I am very proud of these many accomplishments in My Life.

Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. Be Proud of Your Big and Small Accomplishments.